CIOG calls for end to road carnage, drinking and driving  

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In an effort to end road carnages, particularly those linked to drunk driving, the Central Islamic Organization of Guyana (CIOG) is calling on the authorities to enforce blood alcohol content laws, establish sobriety checkpoints, and mandatory alcohol abuse classes for offenders.

The call comes even as the Government proposes to expand existing legislation to allow for harsher penalties to be instituted against drunk drivers, and those bent on breaking the traffic laws.

CIOG, in a statement on Tuesday, said too many lives are being wasted and shattered.

“Driving under the influence causes premature deaths, and it also has devastating effects on survivors and their families due to permanent disabilities, mental health issues, and loss of productivity leading to financial strain,” it pointed out while emphasizing that drunk driving must be addressed.

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It said the authorities must do more to remedy the situation.

“Our roads should not be killing grounds. Actively combat the problem by enforcing blood alcohol content laws, setting up sobriety checkpoints, and requiring mandatory alcohol abuse classes for offenders. Let them hear from the first responders who pick up the pieces and from the medical staff that try to put the pieces back together and from the families whose lives have been ruined. Provide incentives for alcohol-serving establishments to ensure that patrons do not drive drunk from their premises. In addition, regularly distribute pamphlets to educate the public so that they understand that alcohol diminishes and impairs judgment, depth perception, and vital motor skills required to drive safely,” CIOG urged.

The Islamic organization also called on all road users to adopt a culture of using the roadways safely. It noted that modern roadways are filled with vehicles that weigh tons, making it more critical for drivers to act responsibly.

“As a society, let us spread awareness and let us encourage ourselves and others to act responsibly. The decision begins with individuals. Choose not to drink and drive. Make the decision before you begin drinking and before you become impaired from the alcohol. Arrange to have a designated sober driver, either someone you know personally or a trusted taxi service (cost could be shared by multiple people in your party). It’s a choice that could save innocent lives and avoid unimaginable suffering,” it urged.

CIOG said should a person drink, they should not drive. “IF YOU ARE DRINKING, DO NOT DRIVE,” it urged.

Just last week, Cabinet signaled its no objection to two draft Bills – Motor Vehicle and Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 2022 and Intoxicating Liquor Licensing (Amendment) Bill 2022 – aimed to address the reckless use of the country’s roadways



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